The key to ending Real Madrid in Europe was to humiliate them: history, goals and results

Soccer – Champions League

Manchester City eliminates the Whites from the Champions League with a red-hot beating (4-0)

Pep Guardiola celebrating one of his team's goals, today against Madrid, in Manchester

BarcelonaThe caves were waiting for Pep Guardiola with the knife between his teeth and the chanterelle of every spring. “He will never win any Champions League outside of Barça,” wrote his critics. “Only with the best Messi was able to defeat Real Madrid in Europe”, wanted to proclaim again the white supporters, who have such a mania for him for his triumphant passage on the Blaugrana bench. But the Catalan coach has taken his particular revenge with a story that was torturing him with precedents as unfair as they were hurtful. And he has done it through the big door: eliminating the absolute dominator of the highest competition with a noble, honest and brilliant display of strength. No one plays better football than Inter Milan’s rivals Manchester City in the 2022-2023 European Cup final.

Although both the citizens as the madridistas presented the same weapons as in the first leg of the European semi-finals, except for Militao’s entry into the center of Carlo Ancelotti’s team, the trend and intensity of the game was born unequal from the first minute As proof, the statistics of passes in the first 10 of the duel: 106 for City and only 10 (10!) for Madrid. Guardiola was salivating on the sidelines as his men bit to take every split ball, portraying Modric’s 37-year-old and pointing out that Camavinga is not a left-back, but a promising midfielder. The reward for such early superiority, with De Bruyne, Rodrigo and Gündogan commanding the ambush, could have come early, Pep would say, but Courtois set out to keep his team alive with two life-saving saves to prevent the 1-0. Haaland, Europe’s top scorer, saw how the Belgian goalkeeper, an expert in miracles, denied him glory at home.

However, City were not bogged down by the mystique that arises from Courtois’ impossible interventions and continued to do everything better than their rival. Also controlling emotions, an essential art at this height of the Champions League. The skyblues they would have sprinted to materialize such superiority, but Guardiola asked them to be calm and methodical from the technical area. Something along the lines of “guys, if you keep this up, the goal will fall”. And so it was. In the 23rd minute, the umpteenth dance in the English three-quarter area ended with the ball happily in the net. Bernardo Silva received a lot of alone from De Bruyne in the opponent’s area and shot the Madrid goalkeeper. “Stop me now, if you can,” cried the ball before crossing the goal line.

Madness broke out at the Etihad, where the fans were only silenced before half-time by a Kroos shot that crashed onto the crossbar (34′). And three minutes later, Bernardo extended the lead with a header that Alaba couldn’t deny. The most complete midfielder in world football was again deciding. What a shame that Barça can’t pay him.

A master stroke of authority from Guardiola

In the second half, Ancelotti did not change men, but he did change a bit of the plan. He must have turned red in the dressing room as he chewed gum to ask his players for some spirit. Not even if it was to find Vinícius, closely guarded by the fast Walker, in some isolated action. It was not the Brazilian but Alaba who was responsible for reminding that Madrid need half a chance to resurface, but Ederson took off to deflect his free-kick into the corner. The whites were looking for the spark or the excuse to put on the costume of the comebacks because yes, “because we are Madrid and we want to win the fifteenth“. But this time nothing defeated Guardiola’s Cartesian logic, even when the classic Madrid syllogism – what will happen will happen and no one will know how to explain it – threatened with a ball in the space that Benzema, very switched off in the entire tie, he did not turn into any pretext to believe in the resurrection.

In the 70th minute, Courtois again disguised himself as a superhero so that Haaland saved his gunpowder for June 10. However, it was too late for Madrid to wake up. Indeed, the goalkeeper merengue he avoided a historic defeat, much redder than the 4-0 that first Militao, with a target in his own goal, and then Julián Álvarez set the scoreboard of an anticipated final resolved with a master stroke of authority.

  • Manchester City: Ederson; Walker, Stones, Dias, Akanji; Gundogan (Mahrez, 79′), Rodri, De Bruyne (Foden, 84′); Grealish, Haaland (Álvarez, 89′) and Bernardo Silva. Coach: Pep Guardiola.
  • Real Madrid: Courtois; Carvajal (Lucas Vázquez, 80′), Militao, Alaba, Camavinga (Tchouameni, 80′); Kroos (Asensio, 70′), Modric (Rüdiger, 63′), Valverde; Rodrygo (Ceballos, 81′), Benzema and Vinícius. Coach: Carlo Ancelotti.
  • Goals: 1-0 Bernardo Silva (23′), 2-0 Bernardo Silva (37′), 4-0 Militao pp (76′), 4-0 Julián Álvarez (91′)
  • Referee: Szymon Marciniak (Poland)
  • Yellow cards: Dias (50′), Gündogan (63′), Carvajal (56′) and Camavinga (75′)
  • Red cards: None
  • Estadi: Etihad Stadium

Source: – Portada by

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